Go ahead and toss all your other meatball recipes aside. After biting into these unbelievably flavourful balls of greatness, this is the only one you’ll need or want—forever.


Much like a traditional Bolognese, one of the secrets to nailing a moist meatball is to add a few hunks of milk-soaked bread to a mixture of the holy trinity of ground meat (beef, veal and pork). This combination ensures there’s just enough fat running through to keep the meatballs from drying out. Sautéed onions, garlic, red pepper and fresh herbs only take them to the next level.

While noshing on a big old plate of spaghetti and meatballs is the epitome of great winter eats, elevate this humble recipe to dinner-party status by serving it with a bowl of creamy, cheesy risotto and finish it off with a few shavings of fresh, good-quality Parmesan and chopped parsley.

Giant Italian Meatballs

This recipe makes 40+ small meat balls and four giant ones. Freeze the leftovers for a quickie meal any day of the week.


1 lbs ground beef
1 lbs ground pork
1 lbs ground veal
2 large pieces of bread, soaked in milk*
1 cup dried bread crumbs
4 large eggs
1 large onion, diced
2 red peppers, diced
5 large cloves fresh garlic, minced
Fresh Italian parsley
Fresh basil
*1/2 cup whole milk



  1. Preheat oven to 375°F.
  2. In a shallow bowl, pour milk over bread and allow to soak. Set aside.
  3. In a large pan, sauté onions and red peppers until soft, about six minutes. Add garlic and cook for 1 minute. Remove from heat and set aside to cool.
  4. Mix together meat, eggs, cooled onions and peppers, milk-soaked bread and herbs, adding breadcrumbs until mixture is dry enough to form balls. Do not over mix.
  5. For giant meatballs, form a ball about the size of a small baseball and brown in a large saucepan. Place on a parchment-lined baking pan and bake for 45-50 minutes.
  6. For smaller meatballs, roll each one out a bit smaller than a golf ball and place on a parchment-lined baking pan (no need to brown first). Bake for 45 to 50 minutes. Top with your favourite marina sauce.

BonnieMo Bonnie Mo is a Toronto-based editor and the face behind Food Network Canada’s Food Fetish column. She’s also a contributing editor over at slice.ca.